Property maintenance and electrical services specialist Refix has chosen the year of its silver anniversary to make its first investments in vans bearing the silver star of Mercedes-Benz.
The Southampton-based company is now running five Extra-long Vito models. All arrived via south coast dealer Pentagon Commercials and are racked out for use by electrical engineers.
Refix was founded in 1988 by husband-and-wife team Chris and Pam Mansfield, and provides planned and fast, flexible reactive maintenance services to an expanding portfolio of commercial customers throughout central southern England and beyond. In addition to electrical work its skilled operatives undertake plumbing, plastering, decorating, carpentry, joinery, flooring, drainage and brickwork.
Clean and economical to run, the company’s new Mercedes-Benz vans are powered by smooth and punchy four-cylinder engines mated to six-speed ECO-Gear manual gearboxes designed to maximise fuel efficiency. First to arrive was a 163 hp Vito 116 CDI but the four that have since entered service are all 113 CDIs, which produce 136 hp and 310 Nm of torque.
Key to Refix’s decision to switch from its previous vehicle supplier and put its electrical engineers in Mercedes-Benz vans for the first time was the comprehensive and cost-effective back-up on offer from Pentagon Commercials.
Managing Director Chris Mansfield explains: “These vans are fully equipped with all of the tools, spares and access gear our engineers need to do their jobs. So it’s crucial that we keep them out there and working, because a courtesy vehicle is no good to us.
“That’s why the fact that Pentagon can service our vehicles through the night is so attractive – unlike our previous supplier it’s a commercial vehicle specialist and really understands the requirements of a business such as ours.”
Although this is the first time that Refix has operated vans bearing three-pointed stars, Mr and Mrs Mansfield also own a camper van based on a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, which has been maintained by the workshop team at Pentagon’s Nursling depot.
“As far as they were aware I was a private customer with a single vehicle, but I’ve always been very impressed with their service and attention to detail,” confirms Mr Mansfield. “Pentagon’s sales executive Ian Burdett has also been admirably dogged in pursuit of our business.”
He continues: “Our engineers love their new Mercedes-Benz vans and I have to confess that I had not fully appreciated previously how much better is their standard specification compared to our previous vehicles, particularly in relation to safety.”
The Mercedes-Benz Vito is equipped with an armoury of high-tech active and passive safety systems. These include Adaptive Brake Lights which flash under heavy braking to provide an additional warning to traffic behind, and the latest ADAPTIVE ESP® system. As well as offering all of the anti-skid reassurance of the original ESP® system pioneered by Mercedes-Benz and Bosch, ADAPTIVE ESP® can also determine a vehicle’s mass and centre of gravity and is thus able to intervene with even greater sensitivity and precision in critical situations.
“Our staff cover high mileages in all weathers and at all times of the day and night,” adds Mr Mansfield. “So it’s reassuring to know that we’re putting them on the road in the safest van in its class.”